Even though medical marijuana legalization has grown by leaps and bounds here in the U.S. in recent years, not all medically-approved states accept licenses from those who aren’t permanent residents. In other words, not all MMJ states accept out of state medical marijuana cards.
Furthermore, even among the states that do accept out of state MMJ cards, you may run into issues from dispensary to dispensary, since as far as we know, dispensary managers are allowed to accept or reject pretty much whoever they want.
In this frequently updated list, we provide the most recent rundown of all U.S. states that accept out of state medical marijuana cards. If you’ve been approved for medical cannabis in your current state but plan on moving, be sure to tune in.
Which States Accept Out of State MMJ Cards?
Providing a cut-and-dry list of all the states that accept out of state medical marijuana cards is difficult, because some states overlap and also offer legal recreational cannabis to adult residents over the age of 21.
Of course, medical and recreational programs are always separate no matter what the state is, so we will provide asterisks next to the states that allow out of state registrations but also have passed legal recreational marijuana. Without further ado, here are the states that accept out of state cards:
- New Hampshire
- Rhode Island
- Washington D.C.
Recreationally Legal States That Accept Out-of-State Medical Marijuana Cards
Realistically, it seems like Alaska would be the kind of place where you could, well, just do pretty much whatever the hell you want. In reality, legal use is available for adults over the age of 21, while possession limits for medical patients are 1 oz of “usable” marijuana. You are also allowed to grow up to three mature plants, and six plants in total.
Like Alaska, California has always been regarded as a very marijuana-friendly state – and that applies to outsiders who are looking to score quality cannabis with an out of state card. Possession amounts are 28.5 g of flower and 5 g of extract (concentrate). For personal cultivation, you’re allowed to grow as many as six plants – as long as local counties allow it.
It might seem odd that people would use a medical marijuana card in Colorado, given that anyone over the age of 21 can legally purchase pot. However, feel welcome to check out the medical supplies no matter what state you’re from, as an ounce is allowed in possession for non-residents (though you can only buy a quarter ounce at a time).
Maine is probably not the first state you’d think of when thinking of a state that would accept out of state medical marijuana cards, but in fact, possession amounts are allowed up to 2.5 oz for locals and out-of-staters alike – as long as you have a valid ID card.
One of the more recent inductees into the “recreationally legal U.S. states” gang, Massachusetts is yet another locale where an out of state MMJ patient can legally acquire quality buds. Possession amounts are 1 oz of flower and 5 g of cannabis concentrate.
Michigan, the newest (at least at the time of writing) state to allow legal recreational cannabis use for adult patients, you will have no problem securing high-grade ganja as an out of stater with a medical marijuana card. In fact, Prop 1 provides up to 2.5 oz of cannabis to be allowed in possession for anyone over the age of 21.
Believe it or not, you can actually go online if you’re a resident of the state of Nevada and get approved for a medical marijuana card. However, even if you’re not a resident, you can still secure quality meds if you’ve got an MMJ card from an out-of-state registration. Possession Limits in the Silver State are 2.5 oz over the course of any 14-day period.
Home to my favorite-ever city (beautiful Portland), the state of Oregon is very friendly when it comes to out of state medical marijuana cardholders trying to get hold of some high-quality therapy. In fact, a whole ounce of pot (dried flower) is allowed for adults over 21, as well as 16 oz of edibles and 5 g of concentrate.
Another state where you just might go ahead and assume that an out-of-stater could legally purchase medical cannabis meds, Washington is increasingly becoming renowned as one of the most accommodating U.S. locales for non-state residents. To date, adults over the age of 21 are allowed to possess an oz of weed (flower), 16 oz of edibles, and seven oz of concentrated extract.
Other States That Accept Out-of-State Medical Marijuana Cards
Unlike the above states, the following states also accept out of state medical cannabis cards, even though they do not offer full-blown legality to all adult residents. Of course, always remember to check beforehand with each dispensary, as rules and allowances may differ based on location.
Arizona is an interesting case because, as far as we understand, they don’t exactly acknowledge out of state MMJ cards if you’re trying to purchase something. In other words, you can’t go into an AZ dispensary with an out of state ID card and buy your meds. However, it seems that out of state MMJ patients are still allowed to legally possess up to 2.5 oz of cannabis at any given moment in their private residence.
Arkansas has a unique rule called the “visiting qualifying patient” rule, which basically means that a qualified MMJ patient who is NOT a resident of the state – or a patient who has been living in AZ for less than 30 days but has a valid MMJ license in another state – may be able to possess the same amounts of medical cannabis as regular Arkansas MMJ cardholders. In other words, up to 2.5 oz over the course of a 14-day window.
The beautiful state of Hawaii, where out of state MMJ cardholders can apply for qualification as much as 60 days prior to moving to the state. However, HI mandates that all applicants provide a photo ID of the valid MMJ card that they hold from their home state. This is a great system as it effectively eliminates an overlap period in which you would otherwise not be able to purchase pot meds during your transition from state to state. The temporary card (if approved) is only good for 60 days, though, but this will be plenty of time to acquire your permanent card after settling in full-time. Possession amounts in the state of Hawaii are up to four oz for a 15-day period.
Another friendly northeastern state with pretty accessible MMJ laws for out of state cardholders, the only downfall about New Hampshire is that it only allows non-resident patients to possess their meds – they can’t buy from a NH dispensary. For legal permanent resident card holders however, the possession limit is 2 oz of usable flower.
To the astonishment of probably most every Oklahoma citizen, the state medical marijuana program was passed with extremely liberal guidelines back in 2018. Furthermore, an “out-of-state MMJ license” provides that those who possess a valid license in another state, will legally be allowed to possess their meds in the state of Oklahoma, whose possession limits are up to 3 oz of flower, 1 oz of concentrate, and 72 oz of edibles.
Pennsylvania has some very interesting policies on out of state MMJ cardholders. From what we understand, there is legislation in place that allows parents or legal guardians for those under the age of 18 to obtain cannabis meds from another state, and then administer those meds to a (qualified) minor. Unfortunately, it doesn’t appear that an adult MMJ patient with a card from another state can enter into Pennsylvania and buy meds from a licensed dispensary. For PA residents, however, the legal medical possession limit must “not exceed a 30-day supply of individual dose.”
Rhode Island has traditionally been a pretty liberal state in regard to their medical marijuana policies, but they’ve got some fairly complicated rules for those wondering if out of state medical marijuana cards are accepted. If you’re a qualified out of state patient, you’ll need to bring in two forms of identification (along with your out of state MMJ card), and also be registered in a state that uses a database with trackable medical cannabis sales (according to Leafly these states include: Washington, Oregon, California, Nevada, Alaska, Hawaii, Montana, Colorado, New Mexico, North Dakota, Arkansas, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland, Delaware, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Washington DC).
Last but not least, if you’re an out of state qualified MMJ patient trying to buy legal meds in the District of Columbia, you should be allowed to do so provided that your home state accepts patients from “jurisdictions with a functionally equivalent MMJ Program”. (Check out this link to find out whether your home state is one of those states).
Final Thoughts on Which U.S. States Accept Out-of-State MMJ Licenses
As you can see, trying to buy legal medical cannabis in a state this different from the state you’re qualified in, is not exactly easy. In fact, unless you’re visiting one of the above-mentioned states where medical cannabis has been approved at the recreational level, your out of state card may not be valid at all.
Furthermore, always be sure to call ahead and validate with the dispensary you plan on visiting, in regard to whether or not your out of state card will be accepted. We have heard that even if state laws allow out of state cards to be acknowledged, individual dispensaries do not have to do so.
We hope that this article on states that accept out of state medical marijuana cards has been useful, but of course, if you have any additional questions or concerns, be sure to contact us or leave a comment in the comments section below. Best of luck!